Design thinking is all about finding solutions that respond to human needs and user feedback. People, not technology, are the drivers of innovation, so an essential part of the process involves stepping into the user’s shoes and building genuine empathy for your target audience.
The aim of design thinking is to pool a diverse variety of perspectives and ideas; this is what leads to innovation! Design thinking encourages collaboration between heterogeneous, multidisciplinary teams which may not typically work together.
Design thinking is a solution-based framework, so the focus is on coming up with as many ideas and potential solutions as possible. Ideation is both a core design thinking principle and a step in the design thinking process. The ideation step is a designated judgment-free zone where participants are encouraged to focus on the quantity of ideas, rather than the quality.
- Experimentation and iteration
It’s not just about coming up with ideas; it’s about turning them into prototypes, testing them, and making changes based on user feedback. Design thinking is an iterative approach, so be prepared to repeat certain steps in the process as you uncover flaws and shortcomings in the early versions of your proposed solution.
- A bias towards action
Design thinking is an extremely hands-on approach to problem-solving favoring action over discussion. Instead of hypothesizing about what your users want, design thinking encourages you to get out there and engage with them face-to-face. Rather than talking about potential solutions, you’ll turn them into tangible prototypes and test them in real-world contexts.